Stripping Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of the Arsenal captaincy can’t have been an easy decision for Mikel Arteta to make.
After all, it was less than 18 months ago that the Gabon international scored twice in the FA Cup final against Chelsea to help Arteta’s men lift the famous trophy at Wembley.
But how things have changed since then.
On Saturday, Arteta confirmed that he had dropped Aubameyang from the squad for the game with Southampton due to a breach of discipline by the forward.
It was not the first time that the 32-year-old had been reprimanded for his actions away from the pitch as he was also left out of a north London derby clash in March for turning up late to a team meeting.
Things have since gone from bad to worse for the attacker, with it being announced on Tuesday that he will no longer wear the captain’s armband.
While some may agree with Arteta’s hard-line stance, one person that certainly doesn’t is TV presenter Piers Morgan.
The outspoken Arsenal fan took to social media upon hearing the news to vent his anger at Arteta’s decision.
And he wasn’t done there.
A couple of hours later, Arteta faced up to the media, and stated that Aubameyang would not be involved against West Ham on Wednesday night.
Morgan hit back at the Spanish coach, by posting on Twitter: “What a jumped-up Pep-light pipsqueak. No proper manager would publicly humiliate one of his best players like this – especially when his own performance as manager has been so thoroughly unimpressive.”
Arteta must have known that taking the captaincy off Aubameyang may not go down well with some supporters, and that has proven to be the case, with Morgan clearly appalled by how things have been handled in recent days.
Has Arteta made the right call or will he regret the way he has treated Aubameyang? We may well find out in the coming weeks as Arsenal enter a critical stage in their season without the experienced striker.
Read More – January Transfer Window 2022: When does it open, when does it close and which players are going to move?